All the news that’s fit to print

Kerry Knudsen

Kerry Knudsen

I simply have to quit reading the news. The latest bit of irritation is news of a professor at Ontario’s Brock University, Gordon Hodson, published recently on the internet. According to Hodson, conservatism is a function of having a low IQ and leads to racism, or, conversely, that racism is a function of a low IQ and goes hand-in-hand with conservatism.

Apparently, this piece of news was so hot, Hodson had to forego the traditional process of publishing his findings in a peer-reviewed journal, preferring to send an e-letter to LiveScience — one of those authoritative internet sites with no mailing address. Unfortunately, the Jan. 28 publication on conservatives had scrolled off the site’s front page within three days, yielding to such pressing headlines as: “Mysterious Blue Balls Fall from Sky in England,” “Why Women Lose Interest in Sex” and “Spider’s Detachable Penis Finishes Without Him.”

Actually, I tend to agree with Hodson that conservatives are stupid, depending on what “conservative” means. For one thing, conservatives tend to let it go when the “others,” whatever they are, categorize them as low-IQ, knuckle-dragging bigots. Not smart. In fact, the Oxford Canadian Dictionary doesn’t mention knuckles or bigotry. It says conservative means holding to traditional attitudes, sober and conventional and favouring free enterprise. For the most part, that would be you. However, it is worth noting that democracy is not the state of the majority being ruled by an effete herd of sloths. Maybe we can’t keep Hodson out of our pockets, but we can raise the issue and vote.

Back to Hodson, it is difficult to feel smart when one is paying people like Hodson out of one’s own pocket to file e-stories with cyberscience web sites, while working 70+ hours per week to try to make payroll. It begs such questions as whether we have any oversight into how our money is spent. If not, why? If so, who can we fire? Or, on point, are we stupid?

Accountable, in jail

I dislike the word conservative because it has been incorporated into such images as knuckle-dragging and racism. Racism is bad in Canada. You can be jailed in Canada if people can prove you are a racist, and there is no definition — except now you are a racist if you are a conservative, or so says Hodson. By extension, conservatives belong in jail.

I am more tolerant than that, since I don’t know any knuckle-dragging, stupid, bigoted conservatives. For my purposes, conservatism is the politics of personal accountability. That means I produce goods or services, and the market rewards or punishes me directly. People like Hodson produce e-mails, and they get their paycheque from a huge pool of money they view only as “the government.” If you and I don’t pay “the government,” we get punished. Professors get their pay by virtue of seniority through the university, and are represented by their unions. The market has no say, and professors get no punishment.

Moving forward, on the extreme right we have a fantasy of a knuckle-dragger nobody has seen. Conversely, on the extreme left we have the guys in the Porky Pig masks.

What can we call them? “Leftists” doesn’t catch it, nor does communists or socialists. But they are no fantasy. Religiously opposed to free markets and work, they seem the exact opposite of personal accountability. They call themselves the Black Bloc, Squatters, Babblers and anarchists. I suppose they are what they say. I think they are fascinating, but they are no fantasy. We have all seen them.

Behind the mask

One thing they seem to have learned from society is they know advertising works. Look at this excerpt from one of their battle manuals: “The success of the Occupy Movement… is derived from the reclamation of public space, and the occupation of mental space through the production of cultural and political ephemera including political posters, videos, projections, memes, apps and publications.” One of the cited posters was the catchy: Never Work.

Now, catch this: “Political movements need all the elements of good theatre in order to grow and draw public support. They need heroes and drama, symbolism and foreshadowing, humour and tragedy….” If you would like to learn more, take a look at what your government is funding under the general heading of culture. Hodson is not the only one you are paying to destroy you.

I became really interested in the Porky Pigs (let’s call them PPs) after a riot in Toronto in 2004 where the normally “non-violent” left suddenly began throwing loads of marbles under the police horses’ hooves, and attacking policemen.

Back to the battle manual, the organizers were calling for a new idea. They wanted “diversity of tactics.” Diversity is such a cuddly word, eh? But what they are saying is they want the “right” to use non-non-violent tactics, such as bombs and batons, while a) hiding behind the non-violent demonstrators and b) requiring the non-violent demonstrators to allow the violence under the banner of diversity.

You would be inclined to say the duped non-violent demonstrators were useful idiots and stupid, but that would make them, according to Hodson, conservatives, and they would all be way too smart for that.

Here is an example of the useful sorts. The author is a self-appointed feminist, and she is protesting for “safer spaces within revolutionary movements.” According to her, “…the disturbing number of sexual assaults recently reported in Occupy sites demonstrate that misogyny and rape culture continue to be perpetuated even where groups are actively working towards a world without oppression. Sexual violence against women has been reported in Zucotti Park, Cleveland, Dallas, Glasgow, Lawrence, Oakland, Seattle, Portland, and New Hampshire. Misogyny and victim-blaming continue in responses on Facebook and Twitter. As feminists, what are we to do when revolutionary spaces fail to be safe spaces for women?”

Sorry, folks, but if you think I’m going to touch that question, you have me pegged with the same IQ Hodson reserves for conservatives. Please note that the quote above should reflect that “number” is singular and “demonstrate” is plural, so the sentence is ungrammatical and the author and editor are stupid. Also, groups should be working toward, not towards, etc. It is worse that the author describes herself as a “spoken word artist completing her MFA in Creative Writing….” If you are shooting for a master of fine arts in creative writing, you should endeavour not to sound like a conservative if you isn’t one. (PPs: that was a joke.) Sorry to sound misogynistic, but if you can’t take the heat ….

Or her answer may be in this headline from Rhode Island: “Occupiers Dump Condoms on Catholic School Girls.” As Grandma used to say, pretty is as pretty does.

These people hate you. Hard to fathom, eh? They have their bony fingers around the throat of government fund-dispersers and are ready to call any and all racists and misogynists if they don’t cough up your money. So the government coughs and you get the flu.

You should note that the Occupy movement intends to occupy, and it doesn’t intend that you do. Let your shop burn in the night if it must. Your only purpose is to turn your head to the left and cough.

But, you say, these people have the right to assembly, don’t they?

Nope. I looked it up. The Charter of Rights and Freedoms does have a guarantee, but the guarantee is for peaceful assembly. No “peaceful,” no “rights.” To my thinking the economic and cultural future of Canada depend on the cops using their horses and batons if the occupiers go for diversity. I call it safety for women, and I pay for it.

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